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Reply to Shamir

March 12, 1987

I hope Americans take due note of three points made by Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir during his visit to Los Angeles (Times, Feb. 21 and Feb. 23). He said:

1--Jews should "return" to Israel.

2--Soviet emigrant Jews with Israeli visas should not be eligible for U.S. visas permitting them to settle here.

3--Marriage between Jew and non-Jew is "spiritual suicide."

I would answer the prime minister as follows:

1--Instead of unnecessarily adding to population pressure on Israeli borders by encouraging further Jewish immigration, Israel should take further steps to conciliate her neighbors.

2--All Jews who are refugees either from the Soviet Union or Israel should be admitted to the United States, where they have the freedom to remain Jews, prosper, and work for tolerance, civilization, and peace.

3--Marriage, like religion, is a personal, individual matter. If Shamir is so "spiritual," let him restrain the international trade in deadly weapons carried on by his countrymen.



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